AirTrain JFK and AirTrain Newark, the rail systems that connect mass transit in the New York metropolitan region to Kennedy International and Newark Liberty International airports, set new ridership benchmarks in 2007 - keeping intact two streaks of annual increases in AirTrain passengers that have been going since their inceptions.
To help riders better navigate the systems, the Port Authority this week unveiled new video and audio podcasts for using the AirTrain systems. They can be downloaded and viewed at www.portauthoritypodcasts.com
AirTrain JFK served more than 4.4 million paid passengers last year, an increase of about 12 percent over 2006, marking the fourth straight year of increased ridership. AirTrain Newark handled nearly 1.8 million paid passengers, an increase of about 13.5 percent over 2006, and the sixth consecutive year of increased ridership.
In addition, the rail systems combined to serve more than 20 million additional passengers who used the free portions of the AirTrains to connect between passenger terminals, parking lots and rental car areas. AirTrain Newark opened in 2001 and AirTrain JFK began service in 2003.
Chairman Anthony R. Coscia said, "We've experienced robust year-over-year growth in passenger traffic at Newark Liberty and JFK - from about 59 million passengers at the two airports in 2002 to about 84 million last year. Our AirTrain systems have played a critical role in accommodating that growth by providing a viable transportation option for travelers and airport employees while greatly easing congestion on roads at and near the airports."
Executive Director Anthony E. Shorris said, "As stewards of two of the busiest airports in the world, it's our responsibility to address the many needs of air travelers while always being mindful of the impact our facilities have on the environment. By ferrying tens of millions of paid and free passengers aboard two rail systems for the better part of this decade, we've helped reduce emissions while providing a sustainable mass-transit option for airport access."
The Port Authority of New York and New Jersey operates many of the busiest and most important transportation links in the region. They include John F. Kennedy International, Newark Liberty International, and Stewart International airports; LaGuardia and Teterboro airports; AirTrain JFK and AirTrain Newark; the George Washington Bridge and Bus Station; the Lincoln and Holland tunnels; the three bridges between Staten Island and New Jersey; the PATH (Port Authority Trans-Hudson) rapid-transit system; the Port Authority-Downtown Manhattan Heliport; Port Newark; the Elizabeth-Port Authority Marine Terminal; the Howland Hook Marine Terminal on Staten Island; the Brooklyn Piers/Red Hook Container Terminal; and the Port Authority Bus Terminal in midtown Manhattan. The agency also owns the 16-acre World Trade Center site in Lower Manhattan.
The Port Authority is financially self-supporting and receives no tax revenue from either state.